Lynchburg, VA Sparks31 Class – June 1-2, 2019

Sparks31 Communications, SIGINT,
& Special Technology Class

Lynchburg, VA

June 1-2, 2019

This intensive two-day class covers basic and intermediate instruction on the topics of intelligence preparation to support SIGINT, signals & communications intelligence (SIGINT & COMINT), open source intelligence (OSINT), communications systems available for groups and individuals, communications interoperability, and related support technology.
Learn how to identify your intelligence requirements, how to really identify and then bypass “fake news” as it applies to your intelligence requirements, collect intelligence information via SIGINT, COMINT, & OSINT, what communications services/systems are available to you & the advantages/disadvantages of each, and how to interoperate with ad hoc assemblies of groups and individuals in a “come as you are” scenario.
This is a class suitable for both renaissance individuals looking to expand their skill base, or a group’s “go-to” person for tech-type stuff. No equipment or prior knowledge is required to attend.
The early bird rate (expires April 1st, 2019) for this class is $300 for individuals, $500 for two people. Enroll via


Easy Practice

If you’ve been reading this blog and paying attention, you by now should have figured out what radio systems are being used by whom in your area of interest, and what receiver is needed to monitor your local agencies.

Today, take your receiver, tune it to your local PD’s frequency or talkgroup, and spend the day listening to it only. Keep a notebook next to your radio, and take notes about what you hear.

If your local PD is encrypted, then do it with the county sheriff, state police/highway patrol, or local FD.


I was asked a question regarding a particular species of unicorn at my last class, specifically the solution for a secure, clandestine, proprietary communications for a private group. They never go into too many details, which is due to either ignorance or OPSEC, but this isn’t the first time this has happened.

My answer was this: Take the smartest kid in your group and pool your money to send him/her to the best college you can afford for an MS degree in electrical engineering/computer science. Think MIT. Now you have someone, presumably trusted, who can design your super secret, secret squirrel system for you.

The kid will also have the means to get his/her own HPJIE, and be able to provide adequately for his/her family before the TEOTWAWKI Zombie Apocalypse and Cannibalistic San Franciscan Invasion.

COMINT – What I Program In My Radios

  • Local FD.
  • Local PD.
  • 2 local state police troops (QTH is on the border between 2 troop boundaries).
  • Immediate surrounding PDs.
  • FD dispatch channels out to 10 miles from QTH location.
  • EnCon/DEP.
  • US Army Corps of Engineers (several USACE dams nearby).
  • Regional mutual-aid and interoperability channels.
  • Immediate ARTCC and major airport (within 30 miles) app/dep control aircraft frequencies.
  • Local RR frequencies.
  • AmRRON CH3 frequencies.
  • Common amateur radio simplex frequencies (nationwide and local).

Two scanners are used: one P25/trunked and one analog. Since immediate local frequencies are all analog and of primary interest, analog scanner covers those. P25/trunked scanner covers P25 and trunked system users and secondary interest users. Additionally, a NOAA “all hazards” radio remains on in stand-by mode, a 2 meter base station remains on local VHF/UHF repeater network frequency, and a 6m SSB radio on 50.125 MHz.